My advice may be cleaning up credit report, negotiate PFDs with collection companies and find appropriate ways to get negative items removed from your reports (which can require a lot of communication between you and your creditors), or at least let negatives age or fall off. Other than that, the general ways of getting a good credit score - keep a good payment history, maintain low utilization, don't apply for too many new accounts at once, etc.
Amex credit steps requires you to carry a balance ( keep it small ) and make regular monthy payments. Doing this will lead to faster initial CLI. If you do not do this, your initial CLI could be delayed by 6 months or more
I have no idea what reply #2 is in relation to your question